Sunday, May 8, 2016

Jacobins Jacobites

From Wiktionary:

Jacobin ‎(plural Jacobins) A member of a radical French political club founded (at an old Jacobin convent) in 1789 and one of the driving forces of the French Revolution.

Jacobite ‎(plural Jacobites) A supporter of the restoration of the Stuart kings to the thrones of England and Scotland in the late 17th century

Not the same thing at all, you see. The former took their name from the place where the movement was initiated, the latter from Jacob, the Hebrew form of James, selected because the Stuart they wanted to restore to the throne was James II.

You Outlander fnns probably already understood this.

But this is about Jacobins, a useful word that has gone out of fashion. I first encountered it in the title — The Jacobin — of this quote:

A steady Patriot of the World alone,
The Friend of every Country—but his own.


Background: The French Revolution was a nasty mess that blew almost everybody's mind, including that of Thomas Jefferson, who, though he supported the idea of a French Revolution, deplored the hideous excesses that took place in its aftermath [link]. And the Jacobins were the leaders of it all. They seem to have originated the term "terrorist" and considered it a legitimate political tool.

One reaction to it all was the publication of The Anti-Jacobin, or, Weekly Examiner [link] by George Canning, devoted to exposing and denouncing the Jacobins. The Jacobins called themselves, interestingly "La Société des Jacobins, amis de la liberté et de l'égalités" [link]. In contrast to their benign-sounding name, they advocated, literally, mass murder and terrorism to establish their ideology. What does that remind you of?

It reminds me of the political spirit of our time, a broad ideology that stretches from what is generally considered the left-wing craziness of Black Lives Matter and the various "Occupy" movements to the faux-right-wing neocons. Their ideologies differ only in emphasis, not in substance, and their intent is to spread their ideologies by any means necessary — including mass murder and terrorism — to the entire planet. Oh, there are factions that are hostile to one another, just as Stalin was hostile to Trotsky, but at base, the idea is to spread a politically-correct pseudo-Western liberal democratic crony capitalism across all of mankind, and make them like it.

So instead of using "liberals and neocons," maybe it would be more efficient to type "Jacobins" from now on.

As for the quote, expanded on the quibcag, it is only a tiny fragment of an enormous poem on the subject by George Canning called New Morality. If you think you can struggle through an XVIIIth-century poem, you can find it here [link].
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Quibcag: I have no idea who the girl is. I just searched Google Images for an anime girl writing with a quill.



5 comments:

  1. They certainly considered terror as a legitimate political tool.

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  2. The Jacobins lost. The Jacobin Revolution begat Napoleon. You too shall see the same. The rebels know only rebellion. They cannot govern. Be they Left or Psuedo Right, the mob is a mindless and terrible thing. Its works only destructive, leaving bodies and carnage, the ruins of democracy.
    A New Strong Leader will emerge. Its not Trump. He is the last of the hopes of the "voter". You don't need any elections, you need someone to put an end to the nonsense. Endless Rights do not beget Freedoms. Freedoms come from Strength, not weakness. These victims want power through pity, and they will get neither.

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  3. You intrigue me. Why won't it be Trump? Or will Trump be Caesar and then Octavian comes?

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  4. Jacobin's ladder leads up the scaffold to the guillotine.

    ReplyDelete